Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy on Tuesday announced that Visakhapatnam will become the new capital of the state. Reddy’s announcement also hints that the state government’s plan of developing Amravati as the capital of the state stands suspended.
“Here I am, to invite you, to Visakhapatnam, which is going to be our capital in the days to come,” he said at the International Diplomatic Alliance meet in Delhi. “I myself will be shifting over to Visakhapatnam in the months to come.”
The city will be hosting Andhra Pradesh Global Investors Summit on March 3 and 4.
Post bifurcation of the state in 2014, the Andhra Pradesh government needed new headquarters since the old capital, Hyderabad, became part of the newly-formed Telangana. At the time, the previous Telugu Desam Party government led by Chandrababu Naidu had declared that Amaravati would be the new capital.
After Reddy became chief minister of the state following the 2019 Assembly election, the Andhra Pradesh Decentralisation and Inclusive Development of All Regions Bill was proposed in 2020. The Bill had sought to form an executive capital in Visakhapatnam, a legislative capital in Amaravati and a judicial capital in Kurnool.
However, the state government withdrew the Bill in 2021 after farmers in Amaravati, who gave over 30,000 acres of land for the new capital moved the Andhra Pradesh High Court challenging the decision. Over 55 public interest litigation petitions have been filed in the High Court against the Bill proposing to form three capitals.
Last year, the High Court had directed the state government to develop Amaravati and surrounding areas as the capital region within six months under provisions of the Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority Act, 2014 and the Land Pooling Rules, 2015.
The state government then moved the Supreme Court in September challenging the order.